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Israeli consul denied seat on U.S. flt.

TMMT

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Israeli consul denied seat on U.S. flight because he was a 'security risk'

Israel's consul general in New York, Alon Pinkas, was denied a seat on a National Airlines flight from San Francisco when the plane's pilot screamed at security personnel, "I don't care what you do, he will not get onto my plane." The pilot said that Pinkas's presence would endanger all the other passengers on the flight.
The incident occurred Thursday night, Yediot Aharonot reported, shortly after Pinkas had completed public relations work in San Francisco. He was due to return to New York on the National Airlines flight. Upon his arrival at the airport, security officials informed the pilot that the Israeli consul would be getting on board the flight, and the pilot responded that he would not fly the plane if there was an Israeli diplomat aboard.

According to media reports, the pilot nearly had a temper tantrum in the airport terminal as he argued with police officers who demanded that he let Pinkas board the plane. The manager of National Airlines' San Francisco office threatened the pilot that if the press reported on the incident, the pilot would lose his job.

The pilot apparently broke down in tears, and was said to be close to a nervous breakdown. Pinkas saw what was happening, and asked to be booked on a different flight. In the end, he returned to New York on Continental Airlines.

"It appears to be the case of one stupid guy and not a systemic problem," Pinkas said.

San Francisco Police registered an official complaint against the pilot, and the United States State Department is investigating the incident. Sources at Israel's Foreign Ministry said that they would file a complaint with National Airlines, asking that the pilot be disciplined.

:confused:
 

desert pilot

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Thanks TMMT,never heard of the incident but an airline that has such pilots should shut down!
 

Dep676

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Shut the whole airline down. Yeah that's makes sense. Then in your opinion America West should shut down also. Because they have pilots that show up drunk. Get real. If that was the case all the airlines should shut down then. I am sure all the airlines out there have had a pilot make the wrong decision once or stupid one.

I don't fly 121 but isn't the captain's right to refuse anyone? If it is this guy shouldn't get anything done to him. And if he felt the safety could be in jeopardy then more power to him. Otherwise who cares. It all goes down to we hurt some foreigners feelings :( . BOOHOO.
 

TWA Dude

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Dep676 said:
I don't fly 121 but isn't the captain's right to refuse anyone? If it is this guy shouldn't get anything done to him. And if he felt the safety could be in jeopardy then more power to him. Otherwise who cares. It all goes down to we hurt some foreigners feelings :( . BOOHOO.

The captain has the right boot anyone but that doesn't preclude having him prove to the company that his action was warranted. Airlines have the duty to transport anyone unless there is good cause not to. Just because this is a high-profile passenger doesn't mean he's a security risk. This captain over-reacted and he should be admonished to use better judgement in the future.
 

Acestick

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2 things come to mind...

1.) CRM = Captain Runs Machine

2.) If the foreigners don't like it here, then they can
get the f&*% out...Nobody's forcin' them to stay!!!
 

Dep676

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Hey another well said. Check out the well said post too.
 

TWA Dude

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Acestick said:

2.) If the foreigners don't like it here, then they can
get the f&*% out...Nobody's forcin' them to stay!!!

What does this incident have to do with foreigners? The captain made an emotional decision rather than a logical one. Just because he has the "right" doesn't make him right.
 
3

350DRIVER

Like it or not- agree or disagree with his "choice" the bottom line is "he" has the ultimate say whether or not someone rides or doesn't...... The captain is the one who signs off on the flight release NOT the media nor the police officers working on the "ground"..... As a DAL agent a few years ago I have seen DAL's captains refuse on more than one occasion and the airline has always backed the decision and in most cases if not all the captain had just cause to refuse-.... It is the captain's equipment and if he feels uncomfortable for any reason then by all means he is justified in making that choice- Always "great" to monday morning QB a situation but in most cases it always seems to defy logical reasoning..... Ya don't like the US of A then move- (they say Italy is a great place)

C H E E R S

3 5 0
 

chperplt

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Ya don't like the US of A then move

When did this become someone's problem with the USA?

Captain may be the captain, but he/she better have a darn (<--edited) good reason for refusing a passenger. I don't think this was a good reason, and I hope the captain suffers some disciplinary action.

Are we going to start kicking off every person "we" feel may be a threat to our aircraft without any valid information? I certainly don't think so..
 
Last edited:

TWA Dude

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350DRIVER said:
It is the captain's equipment and if he feels uncomfortable for any reason then by all means he is justified in making that choice-...

No, he may certainly NOT be justified. The company gets to make that choice. Mind you we're not talking about a mechanical problem, hazardous weather, or a suspicious passenger. We're talking about a passenger who was not a risk whom the captain, applying his own home-made brand of security, felt would somehow attract trouble. As I said before the airlines have an obligation to carry everyone excepting only those who are obvious risks. The consul-general of a friendly country is not a risk.
 

FlyinBrian

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Any pilot in command has the authority to deny boarding to anyone on his aircraft. A pilot in command does not need to justify his decision to anyone. However, an employee of a customer service organization does have a reponsibility to exercise the authority granted to him in a manner consistent with safety and customer service (in that order.)

What this captain did is tantamount to denying boarding based on race, sex or religion. That is his right as pilot in command, but not as an airline captain. He had no reason to beleive that safety was being compromised. He behaved in a bone-headed way and he should face appropriate consequences.

I do find it alamrming that local law enforcement was demanding that the passenger be boarded. It's definitely NOT their call.
 

frenchy

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If my memory suit me , just a few months ago major airlines were denying seats to muslims looking passengers, so why now are we so upset because one of us denied a seat ?
I can bet you that if it has been a muslim we would have never heard about it.
Let stop the BS.
 

TWA Dude

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frenchy said:
If my memory suit me , just a few months ago major airlines were denying seats to muslims looking passengers, so why now are we so upset because one of us denied a seat ?
I can bet you that if it has been a muslim we would have never heard about it.
Let stop the BS.

No, airlines weren't denying seats to "Muslim" looking pax. Certain over-reacting employees were exercising poor judgement by letting their emotions get the better of them. The same thing isn't happening now because people have calmed down. This particular captain used his authority capriciously and inappropriately. It's not his authority that I deride but his judgement.
 

~~~^~~~

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siedkick said:
Now that he's been convicted, I'd like to hear his side of the story.

Sidekick, good post. We don't know the whole story and a source like the "israeli insider.com" sounds like it could be just a little biased.
 

TWA Dude

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You're right in that the source could be showing a little favor. So the question is why didn't the mainstream media pick up on this? If the consul-general had in some way behaved inappropriately, as did that Secret Service guy, you'd think this would be splashed across CNN.

Things that make you go hmmm....
 

av8raaron

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PIC=pilot IN COMMAND

I have no problem agreeing with the Captain's actions - none of us were there so none of us know exactly what went in to that judgement call. If somebody who by law is a multi-thousand hour ATP with enough time with the company to be a left-seater says something is so, that's good enough for me.
 

TWA Dude

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av8raaron:
You will find out soon enough that mighty airline captains are not gods no matter how many ratings or hour they have. Like anyone else they make mistakes and have errors in judgement. Captains are almost never called into the chief pilot's office to answer for their judgement on safety related matters. It's not unreasonable for the company to question the decision of a captain booting a passenger who's behaving himself. You're right in that we don't know the full story on the incident in question but what we do know sure sounds like the captain flew off the handle.
 
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